Starting the Year Off Right by Staying Healthy

Jan 7, 2019

The New Year has begun and with the start of it, many are setting their resolutions to make positive changes this year.  Valley Baptist Health System wants to help you stay healthy this year and be part of your goals to creating a healthy life.

Carrying excess weight can put you at risk for a number of health concerns to include diabetes, high blood pressure, heart attack and other illnesses.  By making a conscious effort to lose weight this year you can dramatically reduce your risk of a number of ailments.

“We always encourage our patients to start with a few small positive changes they can make in their life to begin living a healthier life,” said Marcela Montemayor, RN and Program Director for Weight Loss Surgery for Valley Baptist Medical Center-Brownsville.  “Obesity is a disease, so it is important to have the support you need to help make changes.”

Changes you can make to start living a healthier life:

  • Get active – By incorporating a 20 minute walk per day you can dramatically reduce many chronic illnesses.Being active improves your health, mood and quality of life.
  • Get more sleep – Try going to bed earlier to ensure a good night’s rest.Most adults need 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night to function at their best.
  • Drink more water – Ensuring you are staying hydrated is important to your health.It is recommended to drink eight 8oz glasses of water a day.Drinking water helps flush out toxins and improve circulation and blood flow.
  • Make better food choices – Make better food selections by substituting healthier foods.Instead of a sugary drink, try drinking a glass of water.Load up your plate with fruits and vegetables which are naturally lower in fat.Eat whole grains more often and reduce portion sizes.
  • Reduce stress – Stress can have a significant impact on your health.Find activities that can alleviate stress.Exercise and meditation can help manage stress and anxiety.
  • Visit your primary care physician – Make sure you are visiting your doctor annually for routine check-ups and bloodwork.Annual visits help your doctor stay up-to-date on your health and prevent or detect any problems early.
  • Consider weight-loss surgery – For those that have struggled with weight-loss, Bariatric surgery can be the solution.Weight loss surgery is generally designed for those with a body mass index (BMI) equal to or greater than 40, or equal to or greater than 35 with serious co-morbidities.

“For those that have struggled with weight-loss for years, bariatric surgery can be an excellent option,” said Aurora Ybarra, RN and Program Director for Weight Loss Surgery for Valley Baptist Medical Center-Harlingen.  “We see success stories every day of people reclaiming their life after weight-loss surgery.  We’re here to educate the community and provide a continuum of care that starts with the very first informational seminar and continues after surgery.”

Valley Baptist Surgical and Medical Weight-Loss Programs in Brownsville and Harlingen are Comprehensive Centers accredited by the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program. 

“We’re proud to be the only bariatric program in Cameron County to have received this accreditation at both Harlingen and Brownsville,” said Ybarra.

Make 2019 a great year by keeping these tips in mind and committing to staying healthy.

To learn more about Valley Baptist Surgical and Medical Weight-Loss visit:

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